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Going for the career kill in a weak economy
by Ruth Anderson
Jan 26, 2009 | 1115 views | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Tribune/Dan McGee - H&R Block District Coordinator Ana Helu goes over some information at her office in Reno. She helps with the selection process for new employees that includes tax courses, testing and interviewing.
Tribune/Dan McGee - H&R Block District Coordinator Ana Helu goes over some information at her office in Reno. She helps with the selection process for new employees that includes tax courses, testing and interviewing.
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With nearly one out of every 10 Nevadans without work, according to a state report released Monday, the focus has shifted from just finding a job to making yourself competitive in a challenging market.

“Job seekers need to be prepared to be flexible on compensation, job location and even the specific position they take,” said Kathleen Holbrook, local manager of Nevada JobConnect.

Aside from flexibility, a competitive job seeker should have a current resume and polished interview skills according to University of Phoenix director of enrollment Julie Crandall.

To help equip citizens with the tools to be successful in their search for a job, the University of Phoenix will be hosting a resume and interview workshop.

The workshop is free and will be held Saturday at the Northern Nevada University of Phoenix Campus in Reno. The Resume workshop will take place from 9 to 11 a.m. and the interview workshop will be held from 1 to 3 p.m.

“The economy is not doing so well and this is a good time for individuals to update their resume,” Crandall said.

Attendees will learn to write and format a resume to highlight their strengths while learning helpful hints to conduct a successful interview.

“We will be doing role playing to help people practice their interview skills,” Crandall said. “We will be showing people what to talk about during an interview – the do’s and don’ts. It’s really about getting the most bang for your buck. It’s about selling yourself and getting the most information on a page. It’s about telling a story.”

Local businesses like H & R Block believe the interview process helps to define who will be a good fit for the company.

“We like people who are willing to learn and put in the time,” said Ana Helu, district support for Reno H & R Block. “They need to have a passion for customer service.”

H & R Block also believes that success lies more in the job seeker’s interview skills and personality than their work background.

“It doesn’t matter what your background is,” Helu said. “We have stay-at-home moms, teachers and people from many careers. We value a diverse background.”

Above all, Helu believes employees need to maintain a company image of kind, hard-working people.

The University of Phoenix workshop is open to the public and coincides with their mission to propel busy adults into successful careers. This workshop will be the first of the year and Crandall believes with the challenging economic times, it will be well-received.

“Job seekers need to realize there is more competition for fewer jobs,” Holbrook said. “Job seekers should not give up on their goals or their career aspirations, but they do need to be prepared to take a job that may pay substantially less than they were accustomed to.”

To secure a spot at the workshop, contact Cristina Padilla at cristina.padilla@phoenix.edu or call 770-2548. The University of Phoenix is located at 10345 Professional Circle, Suite 200, Reno.
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